An admission first of all: perhaps a cloudy Sunday lunchtime wasn't the best time to evaluate, but the rain after a busy day the night before had put paid to our original plans, so we got there when we could! Nevertheless, as the pictures show, we could get a reasonable idea of the state of things there. The slump in Tijuana's traditional tourist trade was plain to see, with a number of properties boarded up. This has been turned into an opportunity by many of the city's young street artists, and many empty shop fronts have been decorated with vibrant and colourful street art.
That's not to say that the place is a ghost town, with the usual selection of pharmacies, gaudy gift shops and market stalls open to trade with the few people around. Norma and Aurora had a look around a flea market selling decorative (family-friendly!) household ornaments.
Outside on the main drag larger retail outlets were either closed or doing little business. "Sex Shop in the City" and a pharmacy called "Dr House" particularly caught my eye!
The donkeys, infamously painted to look like zebras ("zonkeys") are still there, though few were being troubled by the presence of too many tourists.
Two of TJ's more respectable landmarks are still going strong: the Frontón Jai Alai, opened in 1947 to house the basque ball game of the same name, is an interesting building worthy of a visit, whether or not it is hosting an event. Finally, there is Caesar's, home of Tijuana's historical claim to culinary fame, the Caesar Salad. Now it is in the safe hands of the Plascencia family, amongst the leading lights in the gastronomic revolution in the north of the peninsula. If this revolution gets to reach Avenida Revolución it will be exceptionally good news for Tijuana and its visitors. On this occasion, however, we had a prior arrangement to dine elsewhere, the subject of my next post.